Robots may take over the world someday, but I guarantee this bunch won't be taking over content marketing anytime soon.
1. Hal 9000 from 2001: A Space Odyssey because he hates humanity.
One of the most critical parts of being successful in content marketing is showing that you at least have a general desire to help other people. Hal doesn't care about people. In fact, quite the opposite. He basically just wants the human race to end.
To sound more human, use empathy. Use real life stories as anecdotes that show you've been in the reader's shoes before and want to help.
2. The Terminator (T-800) from The Terminator because he's too cheesy.
Although the terminator has definitely proven loyalty to the human race, content marketing can't be too cheesy or else it will flop. Some cheese is tactfully written and delivered, but if your writing is full of lines like, "I'll be back," people will be laughing at you, not with you.
When you write something you think is funny, make sure you read it to someone more cynical than yourself. Note: This piece ranked pretty high on the cheese factor, but I went with it anyway.
3. WALL-E from WALL-E because he has no variety.
You can't help but love Wall-E. But let's be real for a second, he pretty much only says "Wall-E" and "Eve." In order for content marketing to be successful, we're going to need more than that, buddy. However, this is somewhat of a paradox, because if you want to be a true thought leader, you have to have a narrow enough scope to condense your content into the topics you want to be known for, but you can't say the same thing over and over again and expect people to still engage.
To add variety to your content, talk about time-based issues (new trends, historical differences, and future predictions), cutting-edge pop culture, and analogies that have never been discussed before. Be creative.
4. C-3PO from Star Wars because he has no confidence.
C-3PO sure has a lot of emotion, but he is way too worried to be a true content marketer. There is simply a certain level of confidence and gumption required to publish your thoughts on the web. Sometimes this is viewed as arrogance, but for me, I enjoy what it does for other people more than what it does for me. If I can help someone be better at their job or even just crack a smile, that's a win.
Self-confidence can't be fixed in this sentence, but my challenge for you here is to publish something this week that is somewhat controversial. Take a stand and own it!
5. Fembots from Austin Powers because they have selfish motives.
The fembots exist for one purpose: killing Austin Powers. How often do you click on something that seems like it's going to be an interesting read, but ends up just trying to sell you something? That's fembot content marketing. Not good.
Content should always have a purpose, but that purpose doesn't always have to be revenue. It's not going to be the end of the world, I promise.
6. The Tin Man from The Wizard of Oz because he's too whiny.
Does the Tin Man rub anyone else the wrong way? I know he's generally loved, but I'd hate to catch a cab with him. I feel like by the time I got to my destination, I'd be clinically depressed. Good content marketing is not whiney, it's informative, entertaining, or inspiring.
The good news is, all you have to do is change your perspective, just like the Tin Man. Make it a rule to leave your readers feeling better about you, your company, and life than when they started reading.
7. Ed-209 from RoboCop because he doesn't strategize.
If you've never seen this movie, feel free to skip over the corporate meeting room scene with the Ed-209. It's pretty rough. Without spoiling anything, I'll just say that the Ed-209 doesn't really have any judgement. It's just point and kill. Content marketing with no strategy and guidance is just as dangerous. It takes a lot of work and throws it down the drain.
Question your content. Why are you placing the types of pieces in the outlets you're placing them? Use data to drive future content growth to work smarter, rather than harder.
8. Bumblebee from Transformers because he's not original.
Don't get me wrong here, I love Bumblebee, but his entire vocabulary is literally plagiarising everyone else's. He does a great job of chopping it up and his delivery is on point, but he's just not original. Great content marketing is writing something that hasn't been done before, or offering a new take on something that has.
Avoid adding to the noise (and save yourself from a Google penalty) by only publishing brand new, engaging content.
9. The Stepford Wives from The Stepford Wives because they're people pleasers.
The Stepford Wives say and do anything their husbands want. As appealing as that may sound, the reality is, in great content marketing sometimes people need to hear hard truths. It brings good change. For instance, at Lesson.ly, many of our competitors preach that SCORM is essential for eLearning. The thing is, it isn't. Lesson.ly's platform doesn't support SCORM, and yet, those who have experienced Lesson.ly have changed the way they train employees for the better.
What does your audience need to hear that other leaders in your industry aren't willing to share? You may be chastised by some, but those who can see past standard conventions will be more successful alongside you.
Do these guys have a defense? Can you name any robots that could take over the world of content marketing?